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  • Writer's pictureSew Retro

Introducing Betty - Nancy's Big Sister

The Nancy kimono was so popular when it was introduced in the summer, Sew Retro has made a simple pattern hack and brings you, Betty - a midi length kimono with on-trend side splits - Nancy's big sister.

Betty can be dresses up for date nights, special occasions and parties, or dressed down for a on-trend causal look.

If you are new to sewing, or you have been sewing forever this is a fabulous, sew easy project, that you will return to time and time again.


Materials and Equipment

200cm x 150cm of fabric I got mine from here

50cm of light weight iron on interfacing.

Matching thread, pins, tape measure, chalk and scissors.

Suitable Fabric.

It is important that you choose the correct fabric for The Betty.

Your Fabric choice needs to be medium to light weight, to achieve the look in the image,

Heavy or stiff fabric would result in a different look to the images shown.

The Betty would be very suitable for lightweight fabric such as viscose, polyester or a lightweight crepe.

Tips for beginners

Seam allowance 1 cm this is the distance between the edge of the fabric and the stitch line. You will find a series of parallel lines engraved on the needle plate of your sewing machine pick the one marked with the measurement you need and keep the edge of the fabric to this guide

RS = right side of fabric WS = wrong side of fabric.

Press = Iron the section you had just sewn, seam should be ironed open.



Fits up to size 12 - the finished garment measures, front laying flat 58 cm and the back 58cm total finish circumference 116cm


Fits size 12 to 14 - the finish garments measures front laying flat 62 cm and the back 62 cm total finish circumference 124cm


Fits size 16 to 18 - the finish garments measures front laying flat measures 66cm and the back 66cm, total finish circumference 132cm.

The Betty is not to be reproduced commercially.

N.B. the neck band is cut twice on the fold.

  1. Make a paper pattern for the Betty kimono follow the measurements for your size as given above,OR Pin the selvedge edges of you fabric together, and using tailors chalk, measure and chalk out the pattern pieces.

  2. Cut out the kimono.

  3. Using your iron-on interfacing cut out 2 pieces measuring 84cm x 8cm.

4. Lay both of the front pieces RS up with the short measurement at the top, measure from C to A (all sizes) 12cm. Cut a small notch or mark with chalk, measure from C to B 40cm (all sizes), drawn a chalk line from A to B, repeat on the other side as shown in the diagram, THE FRONTS MUST BE A PAIR. Cut, A to B, repeat on the remaining side.

With wrong side facing pin the shoulder seams together, and stitch taking a 0.5cm seam allowance.

press. trim and stray thread. flip the sewing over RS together, and make another 0.5cm seam. This seam is called a french seam.

5.Iron on the interfacing to the WS of the band x 2.

6.Stitch the short seams on the neck band together giving you one long band, fold the band in half RS together, and press your band should measure 4cm x 168cm cm, using a 1cm seam stitch together the ends of the band.

7. Clip the corners and turn inside out, press.

8. Fold the back neck of the jacket in half and mark with a pin. Fold the band in half and mark with a pin. Join the jacket and the band together at the point marked by the pins.

9. Continue to pin the band to the jacket. N.B. the band ends 1cm from the hem. Stitch the band to the jacket, start sewing from the middle of the back neck stitching down to the hem of the band, the shoulder seams will need to be pushed forward and pined flat to the front of the jacket.

10. 1Zig zag or over lock this seam. Press.

11. Fold the sleeve in half and mark the middle with chalk or a pin. Lay the kimono flat RS facing up and pin the sleeve to the jacket. The chalk mark or pin must match at the shoulder seam. Repeat with the remaining sleeve. Stitch using a 1 cm seam allowance. Repeat on the remaining sleeve. Zig zag or over lock the seams.

12. With the RS together fold the sleeve in half and pin, making sure the shoulder seams are pushed towards the sleeve. Pin the under arm seam as shown.

13. Pin the side seams together, starting at the cuff and working towards the split, pin 1cm of the split.

14. Start sewing from the raw edge of the sleeve, stitching over the seam you made to join the shoulder to the jacket. Stop, leave your needle in the fabric, lift up the foot, and swivel the jacket around until you are able to sew the side seam. Continue sewing the side seam until you reach the split, stitch only 1cm into the split.Repeat on the remaining side. Over lock or zig zag the seams, the split shaping and the hems.

15. press the splits back for 3.5cm. pin

16. Fold the splits RS facing and pin as shown. Stitch across this 3.5cm edge taking a 1cm seam allowance.

17. Turn the split inside out and press. Pin the split and continue pinning taking a 1cm hem on the end of the kimono.

Following the diagram, starting at the front edge of the hem stitch along the hem , up the side of the split , but not close to the fold edge, stitch close to the neatened edge. Across the top of the split and down the opposite side, continue and repeat on the remaining side.

18. Making the cuff. With RS together fold the cuff in half and stitch the short seams together, press the seam flat. Fold the cuff in half RS together and press as shown in the image.

19. Attach the cuff to the sleeve. With the RS of the sleeve facing, slip the cuff onto the sleeve. Match the seams and pin the 3 raw edges together. Stitch the 3 layers together using a 1cm seam allowance. Zig zag or over lock, press. Repeat on the remaining side.

Trim any loose threads, press and CELEBRATE.

CONGRATULATIONS your have just made an awesome Betty Kimono.

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